Suggest treatment for neck pain and stiffness
I do not think they are related.
I read your question carefully and I understand your concern.
I am not sure what exactly do you mean by scary way, however I don't believe the two to be related. Had they manifested at the same time one might have thought of a relation, (say an ear infection complicating with meningitis) but at a distance of 1.5 years and the neck pain and stiffness preceding the ear pain, I do not see any relation between the two.
I remain at your disposal for further questions.